Australian Electric Truck Trial

Beginning next year, an Australian electric truck trial will feature the new Fuso eCanter. The truck has been involved in real-world trials in Portugal and Germany, and the latest eCanter features an upgraded drive system and new design. Fuso confirmed the eCanter will be involved in a trial with key customer fleets next year.

Fuso revealed the third generation of the all-electric light duty truck at the IAA Commercial Vehicles Show in Hannover last week. The new eCanter uses a permanent synchronous electric motor with an output of 185 kW and torque of 380 Nm. Power is transferred to the rear axle by a standard single-speed transmission.

“We are excited to be able to conduct a local trial with the groundbreaking all-electric Fuso eCanter in Australia,” said Justin Whitford, Fuso Truck and Bus Director.

The eCanter has a battery capacity of 70 kWh. Depending on the body, load and also usage, a range of more than 100 km without stationary recharging is possible. The batteries are spread over five units, one centrally in the frame right behind the cab and two more on each side of the frame.

They are water-cooled lithium-ion batteries and said to have a long service life, high efficiency, especially at high ambient temperatures, and also a compact design for the battery units. Despite the weight of the battery pack, the chassis load capacity of the 7.5 tonne vehicle is 4.63 tonne including the body and load.

Individual battery packs with three to six sets of batteries of 14 kWh each are planned for the upcoming small-scale production run. This allows the eCanter to be adapted to customer requirements with regards to range, price and weight.

For some operators, payload is more important than range, while others are happy to sacrifice payload for longer range, i.e. more battery packs. In the charging options, up to 80 per cent capacity within an hour with direct current at a quick charging station is possible, and 100 per cent in seven hours with alternating current.

In the future, Fuso reckon rapid charging with 170 kW will also be possible in only half an hour, equating to 80 per cent battery capacity.

The truck on show at the IAA featured a new design, with LED headlamps and also a a new grille and bumper, as well as a redesigned interior including a central, removable tablet.

Fuso are claiming, the eCanter can be offered at a competitive price at market launch. Lower running costs compared with an equivalent diesel model mean that any additional expense can be repaid in around three years.

In a year-long fleet test in Europe with the second generation of the Fuso Canter E-Cell showed $1400 per 10 000 km can be saved with this vehicle compared to a diesel version.